Highlanders will miss the services of New Zealand international Liam Squire after the blindside flanker sustained a knee injury.
The news will be a big blow to the 27-year-old, who was recovering from a hip injury and was about to resume his career in the upcoming game against Auckland Blues.
Highlanders coach Aaron Mauger confirmed that Squire will need between eight to 10 weeks of rehabilitation.
“He would have been available for this week’s game," said Mauger.
“It’s a terrible blow for him. The guy has worked so hard to get to where he is but these things happen and unfortunately it has happened to a guy who has already had a bit of adversity this year.”
Highlanders are positioned third in the New Zealand Conference in the ongoing season of Super Rugby with two wins from five games and will take on Blues next on Friday at Eden Park.